Gangotri Nandanvan Trek
Location: Garhwal Himalayas
Duration: 11 Days
Altitude: 4463 mts /14638 ft
Grade: Moderate to tough
Best time to Visit: May to October
The Gangotri to Nandanvan trek is one of the spiritual as well as adventurous journeys in the Garhwal Himalayan region. It's just not about a pilgrimage but the colourful alpine-scapes, farfetched snow clad mountains cascading under the serene blue sky, streams trickling onto the valley from the moraines and wild ambiance simply makes it one of the beautiful treks in the Indian Himalayan region. Connecting several Hindu pilgrimage sites, the journey also exposes the mythological source of River Ganga, Gaumukh at about 4,125 meters, which is at the snout of the Gangotri Glacier and further discloses the silver crown with fantastic view of the Bhagirathi group of peaks, Jogin peak, Shivling peak and several other 6thousanders. The trek in the Garhwal Himalayan region brings you to a remote yet beautiful escape that passes through the vibrant forest of cedar and pine and slowly merges with the tricky glaciated tracks. One can spot on this trek a herd of Bharal, which is a common sight, as well as come across several colourful orchards that give a rewarding and refreshing treat to eyes. Living like a nomad for days, the journey also brings home clicks from Tapovan at 4,463 meters and Nandanvan at 4,340 meters. Tapovan and Nandanvan are two of the high altitude meadows in the Indian Himalayan region that is an abode to several Sadhus. The vicinity also pulls in several trekkers from different corner of the world.
The Gangotri Nandanvan Trek starts from Gangotri, which is at an elevation of 3,100 meters. Gangotri is one of the Hindu pilgrimage sites, which is noted for the shrine dedicated to goddess Ganga. From Gangotri the trek passes through the rich forest of pine and cedar and leads to Bhojwassa at 3,800 meters. Thereafter, the uphill trek continues to head towards Gaumukh via Chirbasa and after a day of acclimatization it ascends to Tapovan. From Tapovan the trek snakes and winds to Nandanvan via the Gaumukh glacier and over the dangerous moraine, which makes the journey difficult and strenuous. The downhill trek from Nandanvan follows the same track to Bhojwassa followed by Gangotri and thereafter leads off at Rishikesh.
The Gangotri Nandanvan Trek is considered as one of the moderate treks in the Indian Himalayan region and hence it is recommended to travellers having prior high altitude trekking experiences. Further, the best time to hit the trailing tracks to Nandanvan from Gangotri via Gaumukh and Tapovan is during the months of May and June and September and October.
Day 01: Delhi - Haridwar - Rishikesh
We will start our tour by boarding AC train from Delhi railway station at 06:50 AM for Haridwar. On arrival, meet our travel representative who will be there for your welcome and thereafter to drive you to your already booked hotel in Rishikesh. Check in at the hotel and rest for some time. The evening time is free at leisure. During your free time, you can simply explore the place and its incredible natural beauty or sit on Parmarth Ghat and attend Aarti ceremony of holy Ganga. Enjoy an overnight stay in the hotel in Rishikesh.
Day 02: Rishikesh - Uttarkashi (195 kms (5-6 hrs)
Today after breakfast in the morning, we will check out from the hotel in Rishikesh and drive to Uttarkashi via Chamba and Tehri, which is about 195 kms away. It may take us 5 to 6 hours to reach our final destination. The drive will take us through various narrow streams of Ganga and later on Bhagirathi river valley. On reaching, check in at the already booked hotel and rest for some time. Thereafter, we will get ready to explore the major tourist attractions of Uttarkashi such as Dayara Bugyal, Vishwanath Temple, Kuteti Devi Temple, Harsil and Har Ki Doon, etc. Later, we will return back to the hotel for a comfortable overnight stay.
Day 03: Uttarkashi - Gangotri (3048 metres / 10000 feet)
In the morning after breakfast, we will check out from the hotel in Uttarkashi and leave for Gangotri by road, which is about 95 kms away. En-route, we will be passing through Gangnani hot water spring, Harsil and Bhairon Ghati for reaching Gangotri. On reaching, we will check in at the pre-booked hotel and rest for a while. Later in the evening, we will visit the Gangotri temple to attend Aarti ceremony and darshan of Goddess Ganga. Afterwards, we will return back to the hotel for dinner followed by an overnight stay.
Day 04: Gangotri - Bhojwassa (3792 metres/12440 feet) (14 kms trek/5-6 hrs)
We will start our day a little early in the morning and quickly finish the breakfast to leave for our first trekking experience. We will trek from Gangotri to Bhojwassa via Chirbasa, which is about 14 kms away and required 5 to 6 hours to reach. The initial trek to Chirbasa, an adobe of the Chir trees, is quality easy as we will be walking beside the flattened track and voluble Bhagirathi River. However, the afterwards track to Bhojwassa, the land is really infertile and referred as Arctic Tundra by some of the professional trekkers. On reaching Bhojwassa, we will set our camp at a potential campsite near the river site and rest for some time. Later in the afternoon, we will be exploring the nearby areas around the campsite by own and witness the beautiful sunset on the Bhagirathi Peak. Enjoy dinner and a night stay in the camp in Bhojwassa.
Day 05: Bhojwassa - Gomukh (3890 mts/12760 ft) - Tapovan (4463 mts /14640 ft)
Today we will wake up early in the morning to see the stunning views of group of Bhagirathi peaks. After morning breakfast, we will trek from Bhojwassa to Gomukh, the source of the Ganges. The place got its name from their shapes that appear as the mouth of a cow. According to the legend, Gomukh is the place from where the water of holy Ganga River falls down from the glaciers. On reaching Gomukh, we will explore the region and thereafter continue trekking ahead towards Tapovan, one of the high towering height alpine meadows with beautiful background. The place is famous for its wild flowers, spectacular meadows and gleaming streams. Tapovan is a gateway for various trekking routes and hold a huge base camp. On reaching Tapovan, we will set up the camp and enjoy dinner followed by an overnight stay.
Day 06: Tapovan (4463 metres / 14640 feet)
The day is free at leisure. During your free time, you can either choose to relax at the camp site and enjoy witnessing the stunning views of the snow covered mountains, flora, fauna and abundant natural beauty or engage yourself in exploring the nearby areas. Enjoy meals and overnight stay in the camp in Tapovan.
Day 07: Tapovan - Nandanvan (Trek 4 to 5 hours)
After breakfast in the morning, we will head towards Nandanvan via Gomukh glacier, which will take about 4 to 5 hours. The track from Tapovan to glacier initially passes from the upper section and thereafter downwards to reach the glacier. On reaching Gomukh glacier, we will take a turn towards Nandanvan and directing towards the Gangotri glacier. Walking on the glacier is a little risky as its hike is slippery. A lack of attention can risk your life. Thus, it is important to be alert and walk carefully. After walking for around one km, there is a upright climb. We will set our camp there for dinner and a night stay.
Day 08: Nandanvan - Bhojwassa (Trek 4 to5 hrs)
Today we will start our day a little early in the morning to witness the beautiful sunrise from the high peaks and capture some of the life time moments. Thereafter, we will finish our breakfast and trek down to Bhojbasa, which will be 4 to 5 hour journey. On reaching, we will have dinner and an overnight stay in the already set camps.
Day 09: Bhojwassa - Gangotri (Trek 4to5 hrs) - Uttarkashi
Post breakfast in the morning, we will walk down to Gangotri, which will take around 4 to 5 hours. On reaching, we will drive to Uttarkashi and check in at the already booked hotel. We will have dinner and an overnight stay in the hotel in Uttarkashi.
Day 10: Uttarkashi - Haridwar (195 kms/5 hours) - Delhi
On the last day of our tour, we will have breakfast in the morning and afterwards, check out from the hotel in Uttarkashi to reach Haridwar railway station to board an AC train at 18:05 PM for Delhi.
Day 11: Departure
Transfer to airport to catch flight for onward destination.